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This is why I’ve been gone for so long...


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Ok guys. It’s time to get real. I know there hasn’t been a post on this topic for quite some time. I have spoken to a few of you through PM about this, but like weight issues after surgery, a lot of people develop addiction transfer. The main reason I haven’t been here very often is that I’m one of those people. I’m very ashamed of myself and sick over it. But I think I need to let you all know what’s been happening with me.

I started drinking wine, 6 months post op, back in 2017, the day I found out that my father was dying. I had been estranged from my family for about 9 months prior to that first drink after my WLS, and it hadn’t even crossed my mind to have a drink before that day. I used to be a drinker before WLS, but it was controlled. On rare occasions, I’d get drunk, but it really wasn’t bad. I’m not going to get into the reasons that I hadn’t been in touch with my family. But I had been completely sober from the day I started my pre op diet until that day...which also happened to be Harper’s 1st birthday :(  If I could go back in time and stop myself from taking that drink, I’d do it in a heartbeat. Taking that first drink was the absolute worst thing I could have done. 

When covid hit, and I no longer had Harper here every day, I didn’t have any excuses to not drink during the day. I had started using alcohol to cope with EVERYTHING after that. Dealing with my mother, drink. Problems with the kids, drink. Problems with my bipolar disorder, drink. Stress, depression, PTSD, drink. You get the point. About a year-year and a half ago, my PCP took me off of my bipolar med, because he thought it might be causing the neuropathy I had been experiencing. We tried other meds, but I knew from past experience they wouldn’t work. That’s when it got completely out of control. I started drinking excessive amounts of wine daily. I was buying 5 liter boxes of wine and drinking them in 3 days. I was blacking out 3-4 times a week, and woke up the next morning not remembering a thing from the night before. I would have bruises from head to toe from falling down every time I blacked out. My poor husband started staying awake all night to make sure I didn’t get out of bed and fall down the stairs. 

Then it happened. I met my daughter and Harper at his other grandmother’s house so I could watch him swim in her pool. They always keep a ton of wine and liquor in their house, so I figured, why not have a couple of drinks. I got completely hammered in front of Harper, and the rest of them. Once my husband told me what I had done, I was destroyed inside that Harper had seen me like that. The next morning, I called my PCP and made an appointment. That was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. My family knew but I had never told any of my doctors. I got to her office, and I said the words...I’m an alcoholic. Then I cried. 

She prescribed a medication called naltrexone. She told me to take one pill per day, and to take it one hour before my first drink of the day. We came up with a weaning schedule. Then we set up an appointment for me to start addiction counseling. I had my first appointment with the counselor last Tuesday, and my first appointment with the psychiatrist the next day. He prescribed 2 anxiety meds, starting weaning me off the Xanax as well, and gave a med to help with nightmares. Today is the first day sober. The naltrexone is taking away the cravings, and the other meds seem to be helping as well. I will most likely be taking the naltrexone for the rest of my life. I will be going to counseling once a week, taking a drug test, etc. 

I know this has been a long read, and if you’re still with me, I really appreciate that. Needless to say, along with drinking goes very bad food choices. And we all know what very bad food choices do to our weight. So I’ve gone from 140 in January to 180 as of this morning. I’ve stopped weighing and measuring my food, I’ve been eating way too many carbs...way too much food. I feel like giving up. I’m terrified that I won’t be able to stay sober, and that I’m gonna keep gaining because of it. I stopped coming here 1) Because I’ve been so ashamed of myself, and 2) Because I have been taking from you all and not giving back, because I had nothing left to give, and I didn’t want to keep doing that. You all have been so good to me over the past (almost) 5 years, and it wasn’t right of me to do that. 

So that’s it...I pray that you all can try to understand, and I hope you can forgive me for being absent for so long. I love you guys. 

~Trish 

Edited by Nana Trish
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There is nothing to forgive.  You are an inspiration to us all.  Now you our going through some tough times.  We are here to help.  You know what to do.

I clearly remember meeting you and your wonderful husband a few years ago in Boston.  You two are strong and can work this out.

We are here to support you.

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2 minutes ago, Res Ipsa said:

There is nothing to forgive.  You are an inspiration to us all.  Now you our going through some tough times.  We are here to help.  You know what to do.

I clearly remember meeting you and your wonderful husband a few years ago in Boston.  You two are strong and can work this out.

We are here to support you.

Thank you so much, @Res Ipsa. You know I always appreciate your support. 

We truly enjoyed meeting you in Boston. That was a really great day for me especially. 

I don’t feel much like an inspiration right now. I hope to get that feeling back someday. I’m getting all of the right help for my situation. I still haven’t told my WLS surgeon any of this yet, but I will be doing that soon. I’m going to make a call to my NUT on Tuesday, and get some advice from her on how to get back on track. I’m NOT looking forward to carb withdrawal all over again, but that’s the price I’ll have to pay to get myself straight again.

❤️❤️❤️

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So glad you are back Trish  !!!    Sorry you are going through all of this but I know you are strong and can do this and I am here for you anytime.  Thank you for sharing your story and what has been going on with you.  I am glad to hear the medications are working and I am sure your family are glad  that you took that step.  There is no shame in someone reaching out for help as we all need it at times.  Love you and thanks again for sharing.

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49 minutes ago, tracyringo said:

So glad you are back Trish  !!!    Sorry you are going through all of this but I know you are strong and can do this and I am here for you anytime.  Thank you for sharing your story and what has been going on with you.  I am glad to hear the medications are working and I am sure your family are glad  that you took that step.  There is no shame in someone reaching out for help as we all need it at times.  Love you and thanks again for sharing.

Love you too, @tracyringo ❤️❤️❤️

Thank you so much for the love and support! 

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I knew that you were dealing with some sensitive family issues Trish but I never realized things had escalated as they have.

I've PM'd you.

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5 hours ago, cinwa said:

I knew that you were dealing with some sensitive family issues Trish but I never realized things had escalated as they have.

I've PM'd you.

Thank you, @cinwa ❤️❤️❤️

I PM’d you back

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Trish honey, first of all I am SO PROUD of you for sharing this burden with your friends and family at TTF.  I hope you can feel the love and support and understanding people have for you here.  You have been through a lot, but you also have so much to live for.  I can't help but picture my own grandbaby when you speak about Harper.  He deserves to have his Nana with him for a very long time!  That is my hope and prayer for you - that moment by moment you would have the strength to kick the alcohol IN THE FACE.  And get the wine and alcohol out of the house.  Love and hugs to you my dear friend. <3 <3 <3

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On 9/9/2020 at 3:43 PM, TammyP said:

Trish honey, first of all I am SO PROUD of you for sharing this burden with your friends and family at TTF.  I hope you can feel the love and support and understanding people have for you here.  You have been through a lot, but you also have so much to live for.  I can't help but picture my own grandbaby when you speak about Harper.  He deserves to have his Nana with him for a very long time!  That is my hope and prayer for you - that moment by moment you would have the strength to kick the alcohol IN THE FACE.  And get the wine and alcohol out of the house.  Love and hugs to you my dear friend. <3 <3 <3

Hey sweetie :) 

thank you so much. I’m proud of myself :) I’ve been struggling with the decision to come to you guys with this, but I’m so glad I did. You guys are ALWAYS supportive, and always here for me! I definitely feel the love, support and understanding from all of you. You guys give me hope that I can do this ❤️ I’m 5 days sober today! My Harper is the driving force behind getting treatment. I never want him to know, or remember, that Nana is/was a drunk. That would break my heart into a million pieces 

Every drop of alcohol is out of the house. I did finish what wine I had in the house last Saturday, and David dumped the liquor and threw the bottles out. Saturday night was my last drink. Each day seems to be getting a little easier with the help of naltrexone. I’m really not sitting around obsessing about drinking every minute of every day. I still don’t think I could be around drinkers right now, so I’ll keep my distance from anything that might trigger me. And I will definitely be here more. I’ve really missed you guys a lot, and the love and support I’ve received from you guys is just what I need right now. 

❤️ Love and hugs back to you! ❤️

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12 hours ago, Anita1962 said:

Peace. Strive for balance and peace.

I’m definitely working on that ❤️

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Wow @Nana Trish, your courage is inspiring. Thank you for sharing your story, and I'm glad you have come back to a support network that 'gets' you. I hope everyday gets a little bit easier. Be patient and kind with yourself. We are only humans, grounded to this earth by gravity. It's inevitable that we fall at times. But together we can get up and be even stronger than before. Kind thoughts sent your way.

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I'll start by saying that for some reason my tablet won't let me give you a heart @Nana Trish, so please accept that I'm giving you one. Trish you are one of the strongest and most courageous people I've ever come across, even though we've never met. You know you are in everyone's hearts here, and I'm sure at home. I'm so proud of you that you went to your doctor and said what needed saying. It's only really then that you can truly start to heal. About 12 months ago now I had to do something similar. While it wasn't an addiction transfer issue for me, it was a realisation that I was returning to a very dark place I'd been before, and I knew I needed counselling. While things still aren't perfect, I don't think they ever are, the CBT has given me a few extra tools to stop myself from going to that place anymore. Do what you need to do honey. Share what you want, and don't share what you don't want. Everybody has struggles from the past that we'd prefer to leave there, even if they follow us for decades afterwards. Best wishes in your recovery Trish, and know well be thinking of you. Try not to worry about the regain for now because focussing on your mental health is far more important.  You can lose the regain later, just try to maintain for now.

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@Aussie Bear thank you so much...I accept your heart, and send one back to you ❤️ Thank you for saying all of those things to me. I don’t feel strong or courageous right now, but I’m hoping that will come. It is getting a little easier, and tomorrow will be 7 full days sober. I do know how you all feel about me, and I feel the same about all of you. You guys have been so supportive and caring through the past 5 years, and I couldn’t have gotten through any of this without this group. I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve been struggling too. I’m all to familiar with the dark place, and I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. I’m very glad to hear that therapy is helping you. I’d give you a huge hug if we were closer, but I’m sending you one all the way from the East Coast, USA ❤️ Keep up with your therapy, and do what you need to do to stay in the light :wub: We need you! I’m trying not to stress too much on the regain right now. Unfortunately, one of the new meds they put me in caused some pretty serious edema, so even though I lost 2 pounds, I’m so bloated right now it’s almost painful. I called the doc today and he said to stop taking it. So I’m feeling pretty lousy, physically. I know this will get better once the fluid is off, but man...grrr. My alcohol cravings are a lot less now, so I’ll take that as a win, and deal with the rest of it as it comes. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

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Omg, @Ladybugzzz86!! It’s been a REALLY long time since I’ve heard from you!!! How are you doing, my friend? I hope all has been well with you. I’m still trying to get back into the swing of things with the group, and haven’t gotten caught up with everyone yet.

Like I told Aussie, I’m not feeling courageous right now. I know it will get better, but defeated is the best way I can describe how I’ve been feeling. I’m having a hard time coming to terms with the fact that, with everything I’ve been through over the past 5 years, this time my problems are self inflicted. I’m working very hard to get better, and to make my family proud of me. And I’m also glad I’m back here with this great support system and so thankful that you guys get me! My therapist asked me if I had checked out any of the online AA meetings, and I told her I hadn’t. But I told her that I started coming back here, and how awesome you guys are, and she was happy about that ❤️ I’m so lucky to have you guys ❤️❤️❤️

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5 hours ago, Nana Trish said:

@Aussie Bear thank you so much...I accept your heart, and send one back to you ❤️ Thank you for saying all of those things to me. I don’t feel strong or courageous right now, but I’m hoping that will come. It is getting a little easier, and tomorrow will be 7 full days sober. I do know how you all feel about me, and I feel the same about all of you. You guys have been so supportive and caring through the past 5 years, and I couldn’t have gotten through any of this without this group. I’m so sorry to hear that you’ve been struggling too. I’m all to familiar with the dark place, and I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. I’m very glad to hear that therapy is helping you. I’d give you a huge hug if we were closer, but I’m sending you one all the way from the East Coast, USA ❤️ Keep up with your therapy, and do what you need to do to stay in the light :wub: We need you! I’m trying not to stress too much on the regain right now. Unfortunately, one of the new meds they put me in caused some pretty serious edema, so even though I lost 2 pounds, I’m so bloated right now it’s almost painful. I called the doc today and he said to stop taking it. So I’m feeling pretty lousy, physically. I know this will get better once the fluid is off, but man...grrr. My alcohol cravings are a lot less now, so I’ll take that as a win, and deal with the rest of it as it comes. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

I posted a big long cyber-hugging response to you before it disappeared, but by then my central vision was too blurry to rewrite it. Back now, so I'll see if I can get it done. I'm no longer in therapy. Unfortunately my pysch was travelling regularly from another state, and Covid along with closed state borders put an end to that. I'm much better now though, even if I probably could use a catch up session. Our medical laws don't allow for interstate phone consultations though. Your response leaves me wishing you lived next door so I could give you hugs everyday, because your recent posts make me feel both incredibly sad, but also happy at the same time. Happy you've opened up and are dealing with your issues, while sad you're facing them. Those of us that have been around as long as you, know what you're capable of. We've seen you go from a morbidly obese, pretty much immobile crippled woman, to a vibrant, successful, and very mobile survivor. We've seen you conquer not just your WLS, but also your cancer and knee replacements with such courage and determination.  We all know you can battle this demon as well. Sure it's going to be a day by day struggle, but you've scaled equally as high mountains before, and you'll do it again. You only feel defeated right now because you're just starting out again. I feel that way somedays myself even now, but then I look back at all I've achieved and I'm proud of where I am regardless of any setbacks or falls. Handle this mountain the same way you did your weightloss, one day at a time. Don't punish yourself when you fall, get back up and keep going. I believe in your heart of hearts you know you can do this. As for berating yourself because this is "self inflicted", how is that any different to your obesity and it's comorbidities.... It really isn't. Sure maybe your upbringing helped get you to your weight issues, but it's probably right up there in the alcohol issues as well. With the weight you sought professional help (you've already done that this time), you mustered every bit of willpower you could, and you kept Harper front and central in your thoughts as you went full speed ahead on your program. Harness your love for Harper again, and he'll get you through this just as he has gotten you through everything else the past few years. Best wishes Trish, I'll be thinking of you and will hopefully checking more often to see how you're doing.

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We are a family here, so take when you need to, give when you can. We’re not keeping score, I promise!

congrats for owning your sh*t! You are strong from what I’ve seen via your posts and continue to inspire.

<hearts and hugs>

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Thank you, @Aussie Bear, @LeeC, and @Boston Redhead ❤️❤️❤️ I’m short on time tonight, but I wanted you all to know I read your responses. I’ll be back tomorrow to respond to all of you. Thank you so much for caring!!

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On 9/13/2020 at 7:54 PM, Boston Redhead said:

We are a family here, so take when you need to, give when you can. We’re not keeping score, I promise!

congrats for owning your sh*t! You are strong from what I’ve seen via your posts and continue to inspire.

<hearts and hugs>

That’s exactly what I love about this place...we ARE a family!! I know you guys aren’t keeping score :) I just remember what it was like when I was new here, and all of the amazing support I received was invaluable to me. I want to be someone that other members can look up to and I want to be able to give good advice, and be a shoulder to cry on if anyone needs it. That’s hard to do when you have your head in a bottle. So now I want to be the person I used to be and hopefully be here to help whenever someone needs it! 

Thank you very much ❤️ Owning your sh*t is hard! But I’m getting there and intend to keep fighting the good fight :) Thank you so much for your support (((hugs)))

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On 9/12/2020 at 4:13 AM, LeeC said:

Glad you're back.  You can do this, you are a far stronger woman than you think you are.  Take care.

❤️Thank you so much, Lee❤️ I’m happy to be back! I’ve missed everyone so much! I’m looking forward to feeling strong again. I’m making progress...10 days sober today!! I really appreciate your support :) 

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On 9/12/2020 at 3:03 AM, Aussie Bear said:

I posted a big long cyber-hugging response to you before it disappeared, but by then my central vision was too blurry to rewrite it. Back now, so I'll see if I can get it done. I'm no longer in therapy. Unfortunately my pysch was travelling regularly from another state, and Covid along with closed state borders put an end to that. I'm much better now though, even if I probably could use a catch up session. Our medical laws don't allow for interstate phone consultations though. Your response leaves me wishing you lived next door so I could give you hugs everyday, because your recent posts make me feel both incredibly sad, but also happy at the same time. Happy you've opened up and are dealing with your issues, while sad you're facing them. Those of us that have been around as long as you, know what you're capable of. We've seen you go from a morbidly obese, pretty much immobile crippled woman, to a vibrant, successful, and very mobile survivor. We've seen you conquer not just your WLS, but also your cancer and knee replacements with such courage and determination.  We all know you can battle this demon as well. Sure it's going to be a day by day struggle, but you've scaled equally as high mountains before, and you'll do it again. You only feel defeated right now because you're just starting out again. I feel that way somedays myself even now, but then I look back at all I've achieved and I'm proud of where I am regardless of any setbacks or falls. Handle this mountain the same way you did your weightloss, one day at a time. Don't punish yourself when you fall, get back up and keep going. I believe in your heart of hearts you know you can do this. As for berating yourself because this is "self inflicted", how is that any different to your obesity and it's comorbidities.... It really isn't. Sure maybe your upbringing helped get you to your weight issues, but it's probably right up there in the alcohol issues as well. With the weight you sought professional help (you've already done that this time), you mustered every bit of willpower you could, and you kept Harper front and central in your thoughts as you went full speed ahead on your program. Harness your love for Harper again, and he'll get you through this just as he has gotten you through everything else the past few years. Best wishes Trish, I'll be thinking of you and will hopefully checking more often to see how you're doing.

Oh my friend...you and I are a couple of the “grown ups” on the forum now, lol. We’ve seen each other through some pretty rough stuff over the years, that’s for sure. I read your other post about the RH, and your vision and I don’t want you ruining your eyes writing long posts to me ❤️ But I do appreciate, very much, your words of love and support. 

I’m so glad you’re doing much better now, but it’s such a shame that your medical laws don’t allow for televisits. Like FaceTime, etc. That’s the only way my regular therapist does sessions since COVID started over here. I have to see my addiction counselor in person (drug tests every week), but other than that, most medical appointments are over the phone. I hope you were able to establish some good coping mechanisms for dealing with the lows and keeping you out of the dark places ❤️

I do realize the obstacles that I have overcome have been difficult, and there have been many (Oy), but this seems different. I’m not sure if it’s the stigma surrounding alcoholism, or the fact that I come from a family full of alcoholics, or that I have fought SO hard to get where I am with the weight loss and becoming mobile again only to end up where I am now. I’m working very hard to not confuse my success with my weight loss surgery, and knee replacements, with this huge step backward because of the drinking. I should still be proud of myself for how far I’ve come in the improvement of my health. Like you said, the obesity and the alcohol issues are pretty much the same fight, just a different addiction. And yes, I do feel defeat because I’m starting over again. The world today just feels so surreal, everything being so different. Some days I don’t know which end is up. I’m starting to see things more clearly now that my brain is alcohol free (10 days now :)) and that helps. I’m starting to be more productive around the house, I’m not waking up covered in bruises everyday, and I can remember everything that happened the night before (to the extent that I could before it got this bad...short term memory loss is a b*tch). I’m trying to stop the negative self talk, and berating myself for everything I’ve done because of drinking is doing me no good. I can’t change the past, only the future. So that is my focus. Being the best Nana to Harper that I can, and being the best wife and mother I can, are my main focus right now. But, also making myself a priority. This is something I’ve never been good at, and I’ve always thought it was selfish of me to take some time to myself, or to say no to someone when I just couldn’t handle everything that saying yes entailed. It’s like relearning how to live my life. But breaking it up into bits and pieces is the easiest way to do it. That’s what my counselor is trying to help me with. 

I must say, though, that making the decision to come back here and open up to you guys was one of the best things I’ve done for myself in a very long time. It’s odd that when I get scared and/or desperate, I run away from one of the places that has made me feel so safe and happy through some of the toughest times I’ve lived through over the past 5 years. I won’t be making that mistake again. 

I think living next door to you, and giving/getting hugs would be pretty amazing right about now! Although I can feel the hugs through your words ❤️❤️❤️ I’m sending hugs and love right back to you!

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@Aussie Bear...I forgot...here is a recent picture of my Harper!! He’s such a little man now! Gonna be 4 in November :) 

2C03F721-A402-4775-8F04-6EB12EC58E18.jpeg

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2 minutes ago, Res Ipsa said:

Harper is so cute!!!

Thank you!! We think so ❤️

He’s a definite keeper!!

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